Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits, 60374-60376 [2017-27362]

Download as PDF 60374 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 20, 2017 / Notices slide); and Quantitative Target for Improved Accuracy (e.g., relative spectral correction of emission, fluorescence lifetime, fluorescence quantum yield). (2) Types of Applications: Fluorescence measurements are used for detection in many areas, but how will the proposed reference materials address the quantitative needs of high impact communities requiring better accuracy and reproducibility? (3) Experience in production and characterization of reference materials for quantitative fluorescence. A responding organization should not include any business proprietary information in its response to this request for information. NIST will not treat any information provided in response to this request as proprietary information. NIST will notify each organization of its eligibility. In order to participate in this Consortium, each eligible organization must sign a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) for this Consortium. All participants to this Consortium will be bound by the same terms and conditions. Authority 15 U.S.C. 3710a. Kevin Kimball, NIST Chief of Staff. [FR Doc. 2017–27353 Filed 12–19–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–13–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XF860 Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; issuance of permits. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given that individuals and institutions have been issued Letters of Confirmation for activities conducted under the General Authorization for Scientific Research on marine mammals. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for a list of names and address of recipients. ADDRESSES: The Letters of Confirmation and related documents are available for review upon written request or by appointment in the following office: Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:36 Dec 19, 2017 Jkt 244001 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427–8401; fax (301) 713–0376. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Office of Protected Resources, Permits and Conservation Division, (301) 427– 8401. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The requested Letters of Confirmation have been issued under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), and the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216). The General Authorization allows for bona fide scientific research that may result only in taking by Level B harassment of marine mammals. The following Letters of Confirmation (LOC) were issued in Fiscal Years 2016 and 2017. File No. 19826: Issued to Tara Moll, Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport, 1176, Howell St., Newport, RI, 02841 on January 28, 2016 to conduct ground surveys, photoidentification, and behavioral observations of gray (Halichoerus grypus grypus), harbor (Phoca vitulina), and harp (Phoca groenlandica) seals in the lower Chesapeake Bay, VA, and Narragansett Bay, RI. The purpose of the research is to investigate site fidelity and movement among haul-out locations, and to improve baseline knowledge of pinniped occurrence in areas adjacent to Navy training and testing areas. The LOC expires January 31, 2021. File No. 19749: Issued to Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, FL 33767 on February 17, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, photoidentification, behavioral observations, and focal follows of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Research would primarily occur in coastal waters from Redington Long Pier (Pinellas County) and north to Levy County, FL and expand offshore to 20m isobaths. The purpose of the research is to determine home ranges, distribution, population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive success, in the estuarine and coastal waters of west central Florida. The effects of human interactions in this area will also be considered. The LOC expires March 1, 2021. File No. 19686: Issued to Jennifer Lewis, Ph.D., Florida International University 11200 SW 8th Street Miami, FL 33199 on March 11, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, photoidentification, behavioral observations, and focal follows of bottlenose dolphins. Research would primarily PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 occur in Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary as well as the southern Florida Keys. The purpose of the research is to determine home ranges, distribution, population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive success, in the estuarine and coastal waters of southern Florida. The effects of human interactions in this area will also be considered. The LOC expires March 15, 2021. File No. 20066: Issued to Eric Montie, Ph.D., University of South Carolina Beaufort, One University Boulevard, Bluffton, SC 29909 on March 29, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys for passive acoustic recordings, close approach, photo-identification, and behavioral observations of bottlenose dolphins. Research would primarily occur in the coastal waters of Bluffton and Hilton Head, SC. The purpose of the research is to better understand (1) the acoustic ecology of bottlenose dolphins and their prey, and (2) how anthropogenic noise may impact the acoustic signals of fish and bottlenose dolphins. The LOC expires March 31, 2021. File No. 19903: Issued to Andrew Read, Ph.D., Duke University Marine Laboratory, 135 Duke Marine Lab Road, Beaufort, NC 28516–9721 on April 27, 2016 to conduct cetacean photoidentification surveys, behavioral follows, and audio recordings in the waters off Jacksonville, FL; Cape Hatteras, NC; and Norfolk, VA. Twentyone species of cetaceans would be studied. The objectives of the research are to study factors influencing habitat use, ranging patterns, behavioral variation and population structure of the above mentioned species. The LOC expires April 30, 2021. File No. 20412: Issued to Shoals Marine Lab, 113 Morse Hall, 8 College Road, Durham, NH 03824 on April 28, 2016, to conduct vessel surveys, photoidentification, and behavioral observations and monitoring of harbor, harp (Pagophilus groenlandica), hooded (Cystophora cristata), and gray seals in Maine and New Hampshire. The purpose of this research is to monitor density and distribution; identify and re-sight unique individuals; document use of the area by mother-pup pairs; visually assess health of individuals; and monitor the effects of human disturbance (boating, fishing, entanglement) on pinnipeds. File No. 19540: Issued to Shannon Gowans, Ph.D., Galbraith Marine Science Laboratory, Eckerd College, 4200 54th Ave. South, St. Petersburg, FL 33711 on May 26, 2016, to conduct vessel surveys for close-approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, underwater photo/ E:\FR\FM\20DEN1.SGM 20DEN1 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 20, 2017 / Notices videography, focal follows, and passive acoustic recordings of bottlenose, Atlantic spotted (Stenella frontalis), and rough-toothed (Steno bredanensis) dolphins within Tampa Bay and adjacent Gulf of Mexico waters. The purpose of the research is to continue long-term monitoring including population size and trends, spatial and temporal distribution of individual dolphins, and social structure. The LOC expires May 31, 2021. File No. 16299–01: Issued to Ann Weaver, Ph.D., School of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Argosy University, 5250 17th Street, Sarasota, FL 34235 on June 10, 2016, extended the expiration date of the LOC for one year. The LOC authorizes vessel surveys, photo-identification and behavioral observations of bottlenose dolphins near John’s Pass on the west coast of Florida. The objective is to study the before, during, and after effects of bridge construction on the abundance, distribution, and behavior of dolphins. This LOC was subsequently terminated on August 26, 2016, when a new LOC (File No. 20346) was issued to Dr. Weaver. File No. 15621–01: Issued to Peggy Stap, Marine Life Studies, P.O. Box 884, Monterey, CA 93942 on June 15, 2016, extended the expiration date of the LOC for one year. The LOC authorizes for photo-identification, passive acoustic recordings, behavioral observations, underwater photography and video, and harassment of marine mammals during vessel surveys in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The objectives are to: (1) Study the foraging strategies of killer whales (Orcinus orca) (transient and offshore) within the sanctuary and (2) investigate the abundance, distribution, movement, and frequency of occurrence of cetaceans in the sanctuary, specifically the interaction of mixed species groups. The new expiration date is June 15, 2017. File No. 20386: Issued to Golden Gate Cetacean Research, 9 Edgemar Way, Corte Madera, CA 94925 on July 28, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys for close-approach, photo-identification, and behavioral observations of harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) and bottlenose dolphin in Monterey Bay through northern California waters, including San Francisco Bay, and Kachemak Bay, AK. The purpose of the research is to collect photographic and observational data on the distribution and occurrence of harbor porpoise in San Francisco Bay and to track the movements of California coastal bottlenose dolphins to the northern limits of their range, as well as conduct a comparative stud with harbor VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:36 Dec 19, 2017 Jkt 244001 porpoises in Kachemak Bay, AK. The LOC expires July 31, 2021. File No. 20169: Issued to Maddalena Bearzi, Ocean Conservation Society P.O. Box 12860, Marina Del Rey, CA 90295 on August 9, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys for close approach, photoidentification, and behavioral observations of 18 non-listed cetacean and pinniped species and stocks. Research would occur within coastal and offshore waters of Southern California. The purpose of the research is to continue the long-term study on the ecology and aggregations of, and disease occurrence in, marine mammals in the area. The LOC expires August 15, 2021. File No. 19289: Issued to Mari Smultea, Smultea Environmental Sciences, P.O. Box 256, Preston, WA 98050 on August 16, 2016 to conduct aerial line-transect surveys, photography, and behavioral observations of 20 cetacean species and five pinniped species. Aerial surveys may occur in the U.S. Navy’s Southern California Range Complex off San Diego, CA, and near U.S. Naval installations in Washington state: inland Puget Sound Region and offshore in the existing Northwest Training Range Complex and Naval Underwater Warfare Center Keyport Dabob Bay Range Complex. The objectives of the research are to improve baseline information on marine mammal status, abundance, stock structure, life history, seasonal distribution, and behavior; and assessment of potential impacts from Naval training exercises in the study areas. The LOC expires on August 1, 2021. File No. 20346: Issued to Ann Weaver, Ph.D., Good-natured Statistics Consulting, PO Box 8732, St. Petersburg, FL 33738 on August 25, 2016 to conduct vessel-based scientific research of bottlenose dolphins to monitor abundance, distribution, and behavior associated with a bridge construction project over John’s Pass, Florida and other coastal construction projects. The purpose is to monitor the effects on bottlenose dolphins associated with the construction in an important dolphin corridor at John’s Pass tidal inlet, St. Petersburg, FL. The LOC expires August 31, 2021. File No. 20377: Issued to Wendy Noke Durden, Hubbs-Sea World Research Institute, 3830 South Highway A1A #4– 181, Melbourne Beach, FL 32951 on August 30, 2016 to conduct vessel-based scientific research of behavioral observations, passive acoustic recording, monitoring, photo identification, photography and video of bottlenose dolphins from the Indian PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 60375 River Lagoon and Jacksonville Estuarine System stock. The objective is to conduct scientific research of abundance, distribution, behavior, population dynamics and communication. The research will occur along the east coast of Florida, specifically the Indian River Lagoon and Halifax Rivers from northernmost limits of Flagler County. File No. 18605–01: Issued to Tara M. Cox, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Marine Science, Savannah State University, P.O. Box 20467, Savannah, GA 31404 on September 9, 2016 to add the newly recognized Central Georgia Estuarine System stock of bottlenose dolphins that occurs in the study area. The LOC authorizes close approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, passive acoustics, and focal follows of several cetacean species within estuarine and coastal waters of Georgia and South Carolina. The purpose of the research is to continue to study dolphin-human interaction behaviors related to coastal fisheries, foraging ecology, and social and population structure of local bottlenose dolphins. The LOC expires on March 1, 2019. File No. 20377–01: Issued to Wendy Noke Durden, Hubbs-Sea World Research Institute, 3830 South Highway A1A #4–181, Melbourne Beach, FL 32951 on September 19, 2016, to change the bottlenose dolphin stocks in the LOC to reflect accurately those stocks found in the study area. The LOC authorizes vessel-based surveys involving behavioral observations, passive acoustic recording, monitoring, photo identification, photography and video from the inland waters of the Indian River Lagoon estuary to the Intracoastal Waters of the Halifax Rivers estuary. The objective of the research is to study bottlenose dolphin abundance, distribution, behavior, population dynamics and communication. The LOC expires on September 1, 2021. File No. 20519: Issued to Peggy Stap, Marine Life Studies, P.O. Box 884, Monterey, CA 93942 on December 28, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, passive acoustics, and underwater photograph/ video within Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Eighteen species of cetaceans and four species of pinnipeds would be studied. The purpose of the research is to study foraging strategies and vocalizations of killer whales and investigate the abundance, distribution, movement, and frequency of occurrence of cetacean species within Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The LOC expires December 31, 2021. E:\FR\FM\20DEN1.SGM 20DEN1 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES 60376 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 243 / Wednesday, December 20, 2017 / Notices File No. 19749–01: Issued to Clearwater Marine Aquarium [Responsible Party is Frank Dame], 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, FL 33767 on March 27, 2017 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, photoidentification, behavioral observations, of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) to assess their home ranges, distribution, population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive success, in the estuarine and coastal waters of west central Florida. The amended LOC adds 52 annual takes of Atlantic spotted dolphins that are observed to co-occur with the target species (bottlenose dolphins). The LOC expires March 1, 2021. File No. 18101–01: Issued to Pacific Whale Foundation [Principal Investigator is Greg Kaufman], 300 Ma’alaea Rd., Suite 211, Wailuku, HI 96793 on March 27, 2017. The original LOC authorized close approaches during vessel line-transect surveys for photo-identification, behavioral observation, focal follows, and underwater photography/videography of several non-Endangered Species Act (ESA) listed odontocetes in the waters offshore of Maui County, HI. The amended LOC adds annual takes of nonESA listed humpback whales, (Megaptera novaeangliae, Hawaii Distinct Population Segment), during these surveys. Additionally, the amendment adds in-water activities (pole-mounted cameras and up to two swimmers) with humpback whales only in order to identify the sex of humpback whales. The LOC expires June 1, 2018. File No. 21134: Issued to John H. Schacke, Ph.D., George Dolphin Ecology Program, 223 Trace Lane, Commerce, GA 30530 on May 11, 2017 to conduct vessel surveys, photo-identification, and behavioral observations of bottlenose dolphins (Central Georgia Estuarine System stock) within coastal and estuarine waters of central Georgia. The purpose of the research is to document the abundance, distribution, movement, and frequency of bottlenose dolphins within Georgia and to contribute to shared bottlenose dolphin catalogs within the southeast Atlantic region. The LOC expires May 15, 2022. File No. 18101–02: Issued to Pacific Whale Foundation [Principal Investigator is Greg Kaufman], 300 Ma’alaea Rd., Suite 211, Wailuku, HI 96793 on March 27, 2017. The previous LOC (No. 18101–01; above) authorized close approaches during vessel linetransect surveys for photoidentification, behavioral observation, focal follows, and underwater photography/videography of several non-listed odontocetes in the waters VerDate Sep<11>2014 21:36 Dec 19, 2017 Jkt 244001 offshore of Maui County, HI. The amended LOC adds photogrammetry as a research procedure. The LOC expires June 1, 2018. In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), a final determination has been made that the activities are categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement. Dated: December 14, 2017. Julia Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2017–27362 Filed 12–19–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648–XF828 Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council—Public Meetings National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Announcement of rescheduled meeting. AGENCY: The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting of its Citizen Science Advisory Panel Finance & Infrastructure Action Team via webinar. The meeting via webinar was originally scheduled for December 13, 2017, but has been rescheduled as a result of schedule changes. SUMMARY: The meeting via webinar has been rescheduled for January 10, 2018, at 1 p.m. The meeting is scheduled to last approximately 90 minutes. Additional Action Team webinar and plenary webinar dates and times will publish in a subsequent issue in the Federal Register. ADDRESSES: Meeting address: The meetings will be held via webinar and are open to members of the public. Webinar registration is required and registration links will be posted to the Citizen Science program page of the Council’s website at www.safmc.net. Council address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N Charleston, SC 29405. DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 9990 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Amber Von Harten, Citizen Science Program Manager, SAFMC; phone 843/ 302–8433 or toll free 866/SAFMC–10; FAX 843/769–4520; email: amber.vonharten@safmc.net. Due to schedule changes, the Council’s Finance & Infrastructure Action Team meeting is rescheduled for Wednesday, January 10, 2018 at 1 p.m. The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) created a Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool in June 2017. The Council appointed members of the Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool to five Action Teams in the areas of Volunteers, Data Management, Projects/Topics Management, Finance, and Communication/Outreach/Education to develop program policies and operations for the Council’s Citizen Science Program. The Finance & Infrastructure Action Team will meet to continue work on developing recommendations on program policies and operations to be reviewed by the Council’s Citizen Science Committee. Public comments will be accepted at the beginning of the meeting. Items to be addressed during these meetings: 1. Discuss work on tasks in the Terms of Reference. 2. Other Business. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Special Accommodations These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the council office (see ADDRESSES) 3 days prior to the meeting. Note: The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: December 14, 2017. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2017–27352 Filed 12–19–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P E:\FR\FM\20DEN1.SGM 20DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 243 (Wednesday, December 20, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 60374-60376]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-27362]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

RIN 0648-XF860


Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Notice; issuance of permits.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that individuals and institutions have 
been issued Letters of Confirmation for activities conducted under the 
General Authorization for Scientific Research on marine mammals. See 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for a list of names and address of 
recipients.

ADDRESSES: The Letters of Confirmation and related documents are 
available for review upon written request or by appointment in the 
following office:
    Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, 
NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; 
phone (301) 427-8401; fax (301) 713-0376.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Office of Protected Resources, Permits 
and Conservation Division, (301) 427-8401.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The requested Letters of Confirmation have 
been issued under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 
1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), and the regulations 
governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216). 
The General Authorization allows for bona fide scientific research that 
may result only in taking by Level B harassment of marine mammals. The 
following Letters of Confirmation (LOC) were issued in Fiscal Years 
2016 and 2017.
    File No. 19826: Issued to Tara Moll, Naval Undersea Warfare Center, 
Division Newport, 1176, Howell St., Newport, RI, 02841 on January 28, 
2016 to conduct ground surveys, photo-identification, and behavioral 
observations of gray (Halichoerus grypus grypus), harbor (Phoca 
vitulina), and harp (Phoca groenlandica) seals in the lower Chesapeake 
Bay, VA, and Narragansett Bay, RI. The purpose of the research is to 
investigate site fidelity and movement among haul-out locations, and to 
improve baseline knowledge of pinniped occurrence in areas adjacent to 
Navy training and testing areas. The LOC expires January 31, 2021.
    File No. 19749: Issued to Clearwater Marine Aquarium, 249 Windward 
Passage, Clearwater, FL 33767 on February 17, 2016 to conduct vessel 
surveys, close approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, 
and focal follows of bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus). Research 
would primarily occur in coastal waters from Redington Long Pier 
(Pinellas County) and north to Levy County, FL and expand offshore to 
20m isobaths. The purpose of the research is to determine home ranges, 
distribution, population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive 
success, in the estuarine and coastal waters of west central Florida. 
The effects of human interactions in this area will also be considered. 
The LOC expires March 1, 2021.
    File No. 19686: Issued to Jennifer Lewis, Ph.D., Florida 
International University 11200 SW 8th Street Miami, FL 33199 on March 
11, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, photo-
identification, behavioral observations, and focal follows of 
bottlenose dolphins. Research would primarily occur in Florida Keys 
National Marine Sanctuary as well as the southern Florida Keys. The 
purpose of the research is to determine home ranges, distribution, 
population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive success, in the 
estuarine and coastal waters of southern Florida. The effects of human 
interactions in this area will also be considered. The LOC expires 
March 15, 2021.
    File No. 20066: Issued to Eric Montie, Ph.D., University of South 
Carolina Beaufort, One University Boulevard, Bluffton, SC 29909 on 
March 29, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys for passive acoustic 
recordings, close approach, photo-identification, and behavioral 
observations of bottlenose dolphins. Research would primarily occur in 
the coastal waters of Bluffton and Hilton Head, SC. The purpose of the 
research is to better understand (1) the acoustic ecology of bottlenose 
dolphins and their prey, and (2) how anthropogenic noise may impact the 
acoustic signals of fish and bottlenose dolphins. The LOC expires March 
31, 2021.
    File No. 19903: Issued to Andrew Read, Ph.D., Duke University 
Marine Laboratory, 135 Duke Marine Lab Road, Beaufort, NC 28516-9721 on 
April 27, 2016 to conduct cetacean photo-identification surveys, 
behavioral follows, and audio recordings in the waters off 
Jacksonville, FL; Cape Hatteras, NC; and Norfolk, VA. Twenty-one 
species of cetaceans would be studied. The objectives of the research 
are to study factors influencing habitat use, ranging patterns, 
behavioral variation and population structure of the above mentioned 
species. The LOC expires April 30, 2021.
    File No. 20412: Issued to Shoals Marine Lab, 113 Morse Hall, 8 
College Road, Durham, NH 03824 on April 28, 2016, to conduct vessel 
surveys, photo-identification, and behavioral observations and 
monitoring of harbor, harp (Pagophilus groenlandica), hooded 
(Cystophora cristata), and gray seals in Maine and New Hampshire. The 
purpose of this research is to monitor density and distribution; 
identify and re-sight unique individuals; document use of the area by 
mother-pup pairs; visually assess health of individuals; and monitor 
the effects of human disturbance (boating, fishing, entanglement) on 
pinnipeds.
    File No. 19540: Issued to Shannon Gowans, Ph.D., Galbraith Marine 
Science Laboratory, Eckerd College, 4200 54th Ave. South, St. 
Petersburg, FL 33711 on May 26, 2016, to conduct vessel surveys for 
close-approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, 
underwater photo/

[[Page 60375]]

videography, focal follows, and passive acoustic recordings of 
bottlenose, Atlantic spotted (Stenella frontalis), and rough-toothed 
(Steno bredanensis) dolphins within Tampa Bay and adjacent Gulf of 
Mexico waters. The purpose of the research is to continue long-term 
monitoring including population size and trends, spatial and temporal 
distribution of individual dolphins, and social structure. The LOC 
expires May 31, 2021.
    File No. 16299-01: Issued to Ann Weaver, Ph.D., School of 
Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Argosy University, 5250 17th 
Street, Sarasota, FL 34235 on June 10, 2016, extended the expiration 
date of the LOC for one year. The LOC authorizes vessel surveys, photo-
identification and behavioral observations of bottlenose dolphins near 
John's Pass on the west coast of Florida. The objective is to study the 
before, during, and after effects of bridge construction on the 
abundance, distribution, and behavior of dolphins. This LOC was 
subsequently terminated on August 26, 2016, when a new LOC (File No. 
20346) was issued to Dr. Weaver.
    File No. 15621-01: Issued to Peggy Stap, Marine Life Studies, P.O. 
Box 884, Monterey, CA 93942 on June 15, 2016, extended the expiration 
date of the LOC for one year. The LOC authorizes for photo-
identification, passive acoustic recordings, behavioral observations, 
underwater photography and video, and harassment of marine mammals 
during vessel surveys in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. 
The objectives are to: (1) Study the foraging strategies of killer 
whales (Orcinus orca) (transient and offshore) within the sanctuary and 
(2) investigate the abundance, distribution, movement, and frequency of 
occurrence of cetaceans in the sanctuary, specifically the interaction 
of mixed species groups. The new expiration date is June 15, 2017.
    File No. 20386: Issued to Golden Gate Cetacean Research, 9 Edgemar 
Way, Corte Madera, CA 94925 on July 28, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys 
for close-approach, photo-identification, and behavioral observations 
of harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) and bottlenose dolphin in 
Monterey Bay through northern California waters, including San 
Francisco Bay, and Kachemak Bay, AK. The purpose of the research is to 
collect photographic and observational data on the distribution and 
occurrence of harbor porpoise in San Francisco Bay and to track the 
movements of California coastal bottlenose dolphins to the northern 
limits of their range, as well as conduct a comparative stud with 
harbor porpoises in Kachemak Bay, AK. The LOC expires July 31, 2021.
    File No. 20169: Issued to Maddalena Bearzi, Ocean Conservation 
Society P.O. Box 12860, Marina Del Rey, CA 90295 on August 9, 2016 to 
conduct vessel surveys for close approach, photo-identification, and 
behavioral observations of 18 non-listed cetacean and pinniped species 
and stocks. Research would occur within coastal and offshore waters of 
Southern California. The purpose of the research is to continue the 
long-term study on the ecology and aggregations of, and disease 
occurrence in, marine mammals in the area. The LOC expires August 15, 
2021.
    File No. 19289: Issued to Mari Smultea, Smultea Environmental 
Sciences, P.O. Box 256, Preston, WA 98050 on August 16, 2016 to conduct 
aerial line-transect surveys, photography, and behavioral observations 
of 20 cetacean species and five pinniped species. Aerial surveys may 
occur in the U.S. Navy's Southern California Range Complex off San 
Diego, CA, and near U.S. Naval installations in Washington state: 
inland Puget Sound Region and offshore in the existing Northwest 
Training Range Complex and Naval Underwater Warfare Center Keyport 
Dabob Bay Range Complex. The objectives of the research are to improve 
baseline information on marine mammal status, abundance, stock 
structure, life history, seasonal distribution, and behavior; and 
assessment of potential impacts from Naval training exercises in the 
study areas. The LOC expires on August 1, 2021.
    File No. 20346: Issued to Ann Weaver, Ph.D., Good-natured 
Statistics Consulting, PO Box 8732, St. Petersburg, FL 33738 on August 
25, 2016 to conduct vessel-based scientific research of bottlenose 
dolphins to monitor abundance, distribution, and behavior associated 
with a bridge construction project over John's Pass, Florida and other 
coastal construction projects. The purpose is to monitor the effects on 
bottlenose dolphins associated with the construction in an important 
dolphin corridor at John's Pass tidal inlet, St. Petersburg, FL. The 
LOC expires August 31, 2021.
    File No. 20377: Issued to Wendy Noke Durden, Hubbs-Sea World 
Research Institute, 3830 South Highway A1A #4-181, Melbourne Beach, FL 
32951 on August 30, 2016 to conduct vessel-based scientific research of 
behavioral observations, passive acoustic recording, monitoring, photo 
identification, photography and video of bottlenose dolphins from the 
Indian River Lagoon and Jacksonville Estuarine System stock. The 
objective is to conduct scientific research of abundance, distribution, 
behavior, population dynamics and communication. The research will 
occur along the east coast of Florida, specifically the Indian River 
Lagoon and Halifax Rivers from northernmost limits of Flagler County.
    File No. 18605-01: Issued to Tara M. Cox, Ph.D., Assistant 
Professor of Marine Science, Savannah State University, P.O. Box 20467, 
Savannah, GA 31404 on September 9, 2016 to add the newly recognized 
Central Georgia Estuarine System stock of bottlenose dolphins that 
occurs in the study area. The LOC authorizes close approach, photo-
identification, behavioral observations, passive acoustics, and focal 
follows of several cetacean species within estuarine and coastal waters 
of Georgia and South Carolina. The purpose of the research is to 
continue to study dolphin-human interaction behaviors related to 
coastal fisheries, foraging ecology, and social and population 
structure of local bottlenose dolphins. The LOC expires on March 1, 
2019.
    File No. 20377-01: Issued to Wendy Noke Durden, Hubbs-Sea World 
Research Institute, 3830 South Highway A1A #4-181, Melbourne Beach, FL 
32951 on September 19, 2016, to change the bottlenose dolphin stocks in 
the LOC to reflect accurately those stocks found in the study area. The 
LOC authorizes vessel-based surveys involving behavioral observations, 
passive acoustic recording, monitoring, photo identification, 
photography and video from the inland waters of the Indian River Lagoon 
estuary to the Intracoastal Waters of the Halifax Rivers estuary. The 
objective of the research is to study bottlenose dolphin abundance, 
distribution, behavior, population dynamics and communication. The LOC 
expires on September 1, 2021.
    File No. 20519: Issued to Peggy Stap, Marine Life Studies, P.O. Box 
884, Monterey, CA 93942 on December 28, 2016 to conduct vessel surveys, 
close approach, photo-identification, behavioral observations, passive 
acoustics, and underwater photograph/video within Monterey Bay National 
Marine Sanctuary. Eighteen species of cetaceans and four species of 
pinnipeds would be studied. The purpose of the research is to study 
foraging strategies and vocalizations of killer whales and investigate 
the abundance, distribution, movement, and frequency of occurrence of 
cetacean species within Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. The LOC 
expires December 31, 2021.

[[Page 60376]]

    File No. 19749-01: Issued to Clearwater Marine Aquarium 
[Responsible Party is Frank Dame], 249 Windward Passage, Clearwater, FL 
33767 on March 27, 2017 to conduct vessel surveys, close approach, 
photo-identification, behavioral observations, of bottlenose dolphins 
(Tursiops truncatus) to assess their home ranges, distribution, 
population abundance, site fidelity, and reproductive success, in the 
estuarine and coastal waters of west central Florida. The amended LOC 
adds 52 annual takes of Atlantic spotted dolphins that are observed to 
co-occur with the target species (bottlenose dolphins). The LOC expires 
March 1, 2021.
    File No. 18101-01: Issued to Pacific Whale Foundation [Principal 
Investigator is Greg Kaufman], 300 Ma'alaea Rd., Suite 211, Wailuku, HI 
96793 on March 27, 2017. The original LOC authorized close approaches 
during vessel line-transect surveys for photo-identification, 
behavioral observation, focal follows, and underwater photography/
videography of several non-Endangered Species Act (ESA) listed 
odontocetes in the waters offshore of Maui County, HI. The amended LOC 
adds annual takes of non-ESA listed humpback whales, (Megaptera 
novaeangliae, Hawaii Distinct Population Segment), during these 
surveys. Additionally, the amendment adds in-water activities (pole-
mounted cameras and up to two swimmers) with humpback whales only in 
order to identify the sex of humpback whales. The LOC expires June 1, 
2018.
    File No. 21134: Issued to John H. Schacke, Ph.D., George Dolphin 
Ecology Program, 223 Trace Lane, Commerce, GA 30530 on May 11, 2017 to 
conduct vessel surveys, photo-identification, and behavioral 
observations of bottlenose dolphins (Central Georgia Estuarine System 
stock) within coastal and estuarine waters of central Georgia. The 
purpose of the research is to document the abundance, distribution, 
movement, and frequency of bottlenose dolphins within Georgia and to 
contribute to shared bottlenose dolphin catalogs within the southeast 
Atlantic region. The LOC expires May 15, 2022.
    File No. 18101-02: Issued to Pacific Whale Foundation [Principal 
Investigator is Greg Kaufman], 300 Ma'alaea Rd., Suite 211, Wailuku, HI 
96793 on March 27, 2017. The previous LOC (No. 18101-01; above) 
authorized close approaches during vessel line-transect surveys for 
photo-identification, behavioral observation, focal follows, and 
underwater photography/videography of several non-listed odontocetes in 
the waters offshore of Maui County, HI. The amended LOC adds 
photogrammetry as a research procedure. The LOC expires June 1, 2018.
    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
(42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), a final determination has been made that the 
activities are categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare 
an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.

    Dated: December 14, 2017.
Julia Harrison,
Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-27362 Filed 12-19-17; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P